300,000 workers stage protests throughout Japan against 'zero' wage offers

Some 300,000 workers took part in strikes and rallies in all 47 prefectures on March 14 as part of the 2002 Spring Struggle organized by the Joint Struggle Council for the Victory of the People's Spring Struggle, which is made up of the National Confederation of Trade Unions (Zenroren) and others.

Eight industrial unions, including the All Japan Construction, Transport and General Worker's Union (Kenkoro) Railway Workers' Branch, the Telecommunication Industry Workers' Union, and the Japan Federation of Publishing Workers' Unions went on strike, calling on their members to fight against the "zero" wage offers.

In Adachi Ward in Tokyo, the All-Japan Metal and Information Machinery Workers' Union (JMIU) regional council held a rally with about 300 union members taking part.

A participant in the rally said, "If we accept our company's offer of an 8 percent wage decrease, young workers can't have a future."

NTT workers fighting against the company's restructuring of 110,000 job cuts went on strike in 45 branches in 37 prefectures. In front of the NTT head office in Otemachi, Tokyo, about 100 workers, including Zenroren members, shouted in unison that NTT must stop the unfair labor practice of transferring workers to offices far from their homes without their consent.

JR workers held a rally in front of the JR East head office near JR Shinjuku Station in Tokyo. About 100 participants demanded that the JR withdraw dismissals of 1,047 workers.

The Liaison Council of Public Servants Unions, consisting of the Japan Federation of Prefectural and Municipal Workers' Unions (Zenroren-Jichiroren), the Japan Federation of National Public Service Employees' Unions (Kokko-roren), and the All Japan Teachers and Staff's Union (Zenkyo) organized a central action for a victory of the 2002 Spring Struggle at Kasumigaseki, Tokyo.

Some 2,000 members made representations to government ministries and agencies, marched in demonstration, and held a rally at the Hibiya Amphitheater. (end)